Parents, Teachers Dissatisfied With Response to Slade Elementary Mouse Issue
In a letter sent to families of Slade Elementary on Monday, April 17th, Principal Heather Moro informed families of the mouse activity and the measures taken to address the issue:
“Dear Slade Families:
I need to inform you of a health and safety-related matter that is effecting our school community, specifically in the kindergarten and first grade classrooms. We have discovered evidence of mouse activity inside the cabinets of classrooms in and around the sink areas where teacher materials are stored. At this time, we are monitoring the situation very closely and do not believe it poses a serious health risk to our students and staff.
To address this issue we have taken the following action:
- Secured all food in containers
- Cleared and cleaned out cabinets where evidence has been found
- Set traps in strategic locations, with an intentional rotation to check traps for proper disposal and resetting
- Placed steel wool in possible access areas under the counters
- Ensured all outside doors are closed and sealed properly
If you have any questions or concerns regarding this issue, please contact Stuart Nelson at the Albany County School District #1 offices (307) 721-4400.
Heather M. Moro, Principal.”
A public Facebook post made Tuesday by Chelsea Janzen, a Slade Elementary parent, claims the district response is not enough to mitigate the potential danger caused by the infestation. It says the teachers and administration at the elementary school are discouraged with the district’s response to the issue.
ACSD No.1 Director of State and Federal Programs Stuart Nelson said the school district is currently doing everything they can to address the mouse activity.
"We had a pest management expert brought in yesterday to look at the situation and he had a few recommendations," Nelson said.
Nelson said the specialist recommended more strategic placement of traps and screens over air vents where mice could get in.
"But, the specialist said up to that point we had been doing everything we could have done," Nelson said.
Nelson said the school had bought plastic tubs to store all food in to eliminate food sources for the mice, as well as cleaning out possible nesting areas for the mice.
"The specialist told us it might take time to get them all out and that it might even gets worse before it gets better, but students are safe and there is currently no threat of hantavirus," Nelson said.